Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Colombia: Highest Administrative Court Alleges Cyber-Espionage of Judicial Data

According to RCN La Radio, the president of Colombia’s highest administrative court, the Council of State, said on Friday (June 20) that an investigation is under way to determine whether the tribunal has been a victim of cyber-espionage.

According to the head of the Council,  María Claudia Rojas, "We suspect that what has occurred is a leak of privileged information, so we request the support of the Attorney General’s Office.”

“We hope for results in the shortest possible time because this is very serious matter,” she said.

COMMENT: Concerns about spying arose after the publication of reports that appeared to have been stolen from the computer of council magistrate Gustavo Gómez, whose portfolio includes the controversial case of ousted Bogotá Mayor Gustavo Petro, who was reinstated by the Council.

Mayor Petro, a former leftist former guerrilla, was reinstated in April after a court found that his March 19 ouster contravened Colombia’s obligation to honor formal requests from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.

Petro, an attorney himself, turned to the Commission, a body of the Organization of American States (OAS), after losing a battle in Colombian courts against a decision by the Inspector General’s Office to remove him from office for alleged mismanagement.

The IG’s office ruling would also have barred Petro, 53, from holding any public post for 15 years.

In the wake of Petro’s reinstatement by President Santos, the IG’s office asked the Council of State to overturn the April ruling in the mayor’s favor.